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OxyContin: My Story Of How it Almost Destroyed My Life

Updated on August 8, 2016

Some Opening Oxycontin Facts & Information

Oxycontin abuse has been on the rise this past decade; the number of abusers of OxyContin has more than quadrupled since 2005. Many family's lives have been affected by Oxycontin use and/or abuse, and the number of families touched by the ravages of OxyContin greatly increases every year-- and as shocking as it may be to hear how many people have never heard of OxyContin, you would be surprised how many people would very likely take Oxycontin if they were advised to do so by their Physician. Some people place very high value on the opinion of their Physician. Because of the experiences I'm about to chronicle, I lost trust in Doctors and the medical community as a whole. I believe I was failed, and I was prescribed something that turned me in to someone and something I'm not. Through the course of my increasing dependence on painkillers, I gave plenty of signs to my Doctor that pointed to something not being quite right, but she either failed to pay attention to these signs, which is part of their job as a physician, but she failed to take them seriously. I plummeted deeper and deeper into a dark pit of fear, loneliness, and misery a little more each day. I felt very abandoned by her. When I was first getting deep in to my addiction-and really starting to realize how much I enjoyed taking OxyContin- my Doctor was the only person I relied on for anything related to my health- and at that time, my health was my life. In fact, I communicated more with my Doctor during that time than my own husband. And because OxyContin literally became my life, I wanted to keep her on my good side. I didn't want the people around me to know what was going on, because that threatened my ability to continue the life I was leading. I loved the life I was leading--to know that my entire day revolved around taking those pills. . I believed my life was the best it had ever been. It's amazing to me now, thinking about how that drug altered my perception of everything: my life, the world around me, even myself. The reality I was living in at the time was so far from accurate. I became obsessed with OxyContin eventually; it made me feel so good, so wonderful, so happy, I could do anything when I was on it--or so I thought. Ten years ago, even six years ago, I knew absolutely nothing at all about OxyContin. I could not have told you what it was prescribed for. I can now tell you just about everything there is to know about it. As a matter of fact, I would be willing to place a bet right now that I am now more educated on OxyContin than the Doctor was who prescribed it to me. At the time, I was just grateful everyday for being able to take them.

Because of the string of poor choices I made during the 12-month period I'm about to share with you, I will never be prescribed opiates again--ever. To this day I do not understand how I could be punished for liking something which was prescribed to me by the same Doctor I was begging to help me, despite my medical records clearly showing the number of times I asked for help, begged for help. After hearing my story, once I have laid all the facts out before you of what happened to me, you can be the judge.

This is my story.

The Fracture

The Coccyx
The Coccyx | Source

The Night That Started it All

In late winter 2008, I was working full-time as the General Manager of a brand-new sports bar and restaurant in Elk Grove, Buffalo Wings and Rings, which my husband and I co-owned along with my brother, his wife, and our parents. I worked in the restaurant twelve hours a day sometimes, seven days a week. So it wasn't at all unusual for me to be working from the time we opened at 11:00 in the morning until we closed at midnight (1:00am on Fridays and Saturdays). There were certain closing duties which had to be completed each and every closing shift, particularly by the kitchen staff; occasionally on busy evenings in the event we were extra busy or if we otherwise had a stressful night, we would skimp on doing some of these duties, with the agreement to complete them the next morning. One night in late October, I will never forget how chilly it was that night. It was one of those fall nights where you walk outside and step into the cold, only to have your skin tingle, your nose fill with cold air, the ice cold chill sweep across your face, and you're left thinking to yourself how, just yesterday it seemed, it was Halloween and you were sweating in your costume.

It was a Saturday night, our busiest and latest night; it was well past our usual closing time, well past when we would normally be long gone. I went into the back of the kitchen to check up on everyone's progress with their own duties, we should have been out of there by now. I walked back, not even being an observant Manager at this point--I was far too tired and not going by our usual closing protocol. This one mistake would change my life forever. As I made my way to the back, I didn't see the guys, so I yelled out, "Come on you guys! What's the hold up? Let's go!" and then I stepped down without looking, and slipped so incredibly hard that my body went up in the air, and came crashing down on the ceramic tile floor, right on my tailbone. I saw stars for a minute--I actually think I may have blacked out. It was the most excruciating pain I had ever felt in my life, even worse than childbirth. I felt like my pelvis and legs had been separated from the rest of my body, and it was all I could do to barely get out the words, "Help...!!" I was humiliated for letting such a stupid mistake happen. The two closing cooks immediately ran into the kitchen, they had been in the back cleaning off the mats, and when they saw me, their faces went white. They saw the way I was sprawled out on the floor and the fact that I had a dazed look on my face as if I was somewhat unconscious, they started to panic. Being a very considerate person and not wanting them to freak out--but also not wanting to be a big baby--I told them I was fine. They knew I was trying to be tough. They felt terrible and immediately started to explain but I stopped them both--"I was the one not paying attention, you two did nothing wrong", I said. I know I didn't sound okay, it sounded as if I had just been stabbed with a knife, because that's about what it felt like. The guys helped me up and within a few minutes I made my way out to the dining room. I had friends who came to close with me, they were hanging out with my husband in the bar dining room, drinking cocktails, and we were supposed to go to a nearby local bar which a lot of our customers frequented once we had closed for the evening, which was an hour before everyone else.. I knew a cocktail was probably about the only way I would get rid of this pain, so I downed a shot of tequila, red bull, and cinnamon schnapps, a liquid cocaine, and my husband knew it would knock me on my butt, which caused him to say something along the lines of, "Go girl!". He saw the look on my face as well, and he came over looking very concerned- almost looking ready to fight, and whispered into my ear, "What happened, you look upset?" I told him I had fallen in the kitchen and landed on my tailbone, but I insisted we go on with our plans; I told him we would worry about it tomorrow. He asked me if I was okay and I said yes...I did my best the remainder of the evening to ignore the pain I was feeling, because the liquor did mask the severity of it quite a bit and I wanted to believe I'd wake up in the morning and be healed. Boy was I in for the surprise of my life...

Are Prescriptions an Over-Used Treatment Option in the United States?

Do Doctors overdo it on writing prescriptions as the treatment option, rather than trying other remedies?
Do Doctors overdo it on writing prescriptions as the treatment option, rather than trying other remedies?

Norco Entered My Life

This is the amount of Norco a Doctor prescribes for one day, typically. This is 60mg of Norco.
This is the amount of Norco a Doctor prescribes for one day, typically. This is 60mg of Norco.
This is the amount of Norco I was taking each day after I had been taking them for about 30 days.
This is the amount of Norco I was taking each day after I had been taking them for about 30 days. | Source
This is the amount of Norco I was taking per day after six months of use--and I wasn't feeling high from it any longer.
This is the amount of Norco I was taking per day after six months of use--and I wasn't feeling high from it any longer.

"Jenni, Meet Norco, Your New Best Friend"

Over the next two weeks I did all I could to just be careful and try to stay off my feet as much as I could in the hopes that I wouldn't have to make a Doctor appointment, not just because I didn't want to go to the Doctor, but I didn't have the luxury of taking time off from the restaurant. I've never been a tough girl when it came to pain, but I had dealt with chronic back pain literally my whole life; I was diagnosed with scoliosis at age ten and all through childhood and adolescence I struggled to have a normal life when I felt like a little old lady having back pain all the time. I missed school several times every single year from kindergarten through senior year of high school because of severe back pain. In fact, three years of high school I spent in Physical Therapy two to three times every week, and I also went to Chiropractor on a regular basis starting at age fourteen; these things were not typical for a girl my age by any means, but for me they certainly were. In other words, I was no stranger to back pain so it wasn't nearly as big of a deal for me as it would be for someone who didn't deal with it on just about a daily basis his or her entire life.

Two weeks went by and I just couldn't take it anymore. I was hurting worse than I ever had and I knew there had to be something wrong. I saw my Doctor, had an x-Ray done, and was given a prescription for 50mg of Tramadol. I had never heard of it. I gave it a try over the next three or four days but decided it was worthless, they might as well have been sugar pills. I spoke to my Doctor on the phone and she asked me if I had ever heard of Norco. I said no, I hadn't. She explained that it's basically the same thing as Vicodin--she asked if I knew anything about Vicodin; I told her I took it once when I had my wisdom teeth pulled. She explained that it's twice as strong as Vicodin with only about 2/3 of the acetaminophen. I told her great, we hung up, and I picked it up that day, Once I had picked it up from Walgreen's, I came home, took two, and laid down. I was laying there, trying to go to sleep and thinking about everything that had gone on in recent weeks, hoping the back pain improved so I could get back to work at the restaurant and things could go back to normal. The strangest thing happened about forty-minutes later. I couldn't explain it at the time, but a sudden huge wash of euphoria and pleasure swept over my body and within a couple of minutes, I had never felt happier or loved life more than that very moment. It was like the best orgasm of my life. It was pretty amazing, No--amazing doesn't adequately describe the intensity with which I enjoyed that very first experience.. I didn't spend too much time thinking about that very first experience just yet, it did feel good but that was it for then; it was months later until I gave it another thought . It definitely wasn't something, at that point, I would try to purposely experience again. I took a couple of Norco every few days over the next week, then I promptly discontinued them, feeling I was able to bear the pain without them just fine; I put the bottle of Norco in a cabinet high-up in my kitchen in a place my kids couldn't reach. To be honest, I forgot about that little bottle for quite a while.

However, it was four months later that I saw the bottle of pills in the cabinet out of the corner of my eye. By this time I had already slowly slipped in to a pattern of consuming alcohol on nearly a daily basis, so what was the shame in taking a couple of Norco to feel good? It's funny how a person can slowly change their attitude about something, so that what was once a "no way, that can't happen" thought, could so easily turn into a "no big deal, right?" thought. Well, I went ahead and took one, and within an hour, rather than feel that amazing euphoria, I began to feel very nauseated, and threw up about every thirty to sixty minutes for the rest of the day. If only I had let that day be a sign; if only I had allowed that experience to be a very clear message to me that I needed to stay away from those pills. They were trouble, and deep down, I knew it. But I ignored it. I was absolutely determined to feel that incredible euphoria again-- I didn't care how long it took. The next morning I woke up, thinking about the Norco, and I took one. Again, I was throwing up the rest of the day. So at this point I was feeling pretty ornery about it and there was no way I was backing down now. The next day I took just one-half of a Norco, and BAM!! Euphoria...Jackpot! And so began the new routine of constant pill-popping--not to relieve my pain but to feel a very specific high-- which was a routine which would change my life from that day forward...

Here are the withdrawal symptoms as viewed on a timeline...
Here are the withdrawal symptoms as viewed on a timeline...

Norco Addiction is Just Around the Corner

Within a month I was already taking more than ten Norco each day. I currently have friends and acquaintances who have been taking Norco for 5-7 years and they take less than I was in just one month. Over the course of the next three months, I became a different person entirely. The woman who had once always, always put her three beautiful children above everything in this world, became a little more consumed each day with the act of ingesting those little yellow pills, that she was unrecognizable even to herself. I was already calling in to my Doctor after three weeks asking for a refill and when my Doctor didn't comply with my request, I very quickly figured out that I could buy them on the street. It makes me physically ill when I think of how quickly my frame of mind changed from a caring, loving wife and mother to a pill-popping addict, Norco became my life. It took hold of me so tight, so fast that I eventually lost my position managing the restaurant I had once been so proud of owning along with my four favorite family members--not to mention, it got to a point where my family no longer trusted me to be around the cash we were bringing in, to be in charge of operating an entire restaurant (even though my skills at Managing had become even stronger during that time). Within months of becoming a regular Norco-user, I had already been hospitalized for over-dosing after an incident in which I had a seizure one night and almost declared dead right in front of my 9 year old daughter, which led to me being taken to the emergency room by ambulance. But I couldn't see that everyone was extremely worried about me, more than all else; all I wanted was them to stop controlling me and let me have my pills back. I promised to get the Norco use under control and from then on, I worked double-time just trying to cover up how much I was actually using and I never again, until after I quit, was honest with my husband, my parents, my best friend--no one, because I saw everyone as being nothing more than a threat to my ability to use. I still didn't see, however, what it was doing to me. I was being prescribed 180 Norco every month but was going through them in less than ten days, then got through the remainder of the month by buying them on the street.

I can sit here and describe and draw pictures for you and explain in fantastic detail what my life was like then, and I could share with you each and every detail of what the next six months or so of my life were like but there is no way I could fully make you understand the depth of this addiction and how it tightly it grabbed hold of me and how seriously I got wrapped up in it to a level that went way beyond anything I could comprehend at that time. The excitement and anticipation I felt every time I thought maybe I would get to experience that euphoria just one more time--that seems to be the "big thing" with opiates, just one more time I'll take too many, just one more time I'll ask for my prescription early, just one more time I'll buy them, just one more time I'll steal from so-and-so to buy them, just one more time I will lie and cheat and be dishonest--and it turned out, I ended up no longer even deriving a minute amount of pleasure from it. I hadn't actually felt that Norco induced-euphoria in quite a while, and from what I understand about opiates, it's because I had overloaded the opiate receptors in my brain to the point that no amount of Norco would make me feel that way again. Within weeks of me realizing I was out of control and wanting to do something to slow things down, I quit the pills--100% of my own accord--for nine solid days, and I had gotten through the worst part of the nasty, miserable withdrawals that taking these awful, awful pills caused--but that changed immediately after my Doctor called me personally with the results of the two MRIs I had had done recently; The extent of damage in my back went well beyond the scoliosis and fractured tailbone; I had serious problems with my back, she explained. She explained that I had eight bulging discs in my lower- and middle-back. She further explained that I had advanced degenerative disc disease--degenerative disc disease is a condition that old people get--it's very normal- but it's not, on the other hand, normal for a woman of 35 years-old to have it at a level as advanced as mine is. She said that it could be worse, but that I would deal with chronic pain for the rest of my life for sure. I didn't tell her I had quit the pills; she immediately increased the amount of Norco I was being prescribed--I literally did not have to say one word to her about it--and do you know what the SICK thing is? When we hung up from the call she made to me that day with the news of my extensive back problems, I had the biggest smile on my face as we hung up. The only thing that did was make the addiction ten times as well as give me the green light to be out-of-control, but to have a good excuse. I never once stopped and thought about how much this was affecting my body, not to mention how it was negatively affecting the relationships I shared with the most precious, important people in the world to me.


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Six months after I began taking Norco on a regular basis--two months after I received that phone call explaining my back problems. I had tried (obviously with no success) to quit a minimum of three times--one time I got to ten days clean, which was amazing considering how awful it felt (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headaches, body aches and pains, stomach cramps, irritability, inability to think of anything other than my obsession with the pills, anxiety so intense my skin crawled with discomfort like you wouldn't believe, cravings for more of the drug which put a pregnant woman's worst, more bizarre late night craving to shame, pain so intense I found it impossible to get comfortable the whole ten days... the list of horrific symptoms goes on and on, and each day of sobriety brought a new host of symptoms which felt so uncomfortable and undesirable that I literally wanted to be dead, because at least in death the physical misery would be gone. I made the decision one summer day in 2009, after realizing I had been taking around forty Norco per day, to pay a visit my Doctor and just tell her, truthfully and sincerely, what had been going on. I lost it and bawled my eyes out in her office, and the shame I felt in begging for her to help me get off of these pills, I told her I was willing to do anything. I will never forget what happened next, to this day I don't know what was going through her mind; at first she was at a loss as to whether she should believe I really wanted help or if this was another manipulative ploy to get more pills; perhaps it was a little of both. It's sad, unbelievable really, that she hadn't dealt with opiate addiction yet; she had been practicing medicine for well over a decade. She left the exam room to speak with one of her colleagues; I sat in the exam room relieved that that part was over, yet not knowing what to expect next. When she came back in, she handed me a painkiller contract which stated very plainly that I had to agree to take what she was going to give me under her supervision and direction only and I would not, at any time, take more than what I was prescribed. I immediately thought of those pills they give alcoholics so that when they drank, they vomit. She went on to tell me that as a result of number of serious back problems I have and the chronic pain I will have to deal with for the rest of my life, she felt that taking me off Norco and then letting me be in pain wouldn't be the best course of action; she wanted to take me off of Norco by putting me on OxyContin. Excuse me, come again? You're telling me that your plan is to take me off of Norco-a mild to moderate narcotic painkiller, and then instead to put me on the second most strong painkiller available on the market (only second to fentanyl, a terrible addictive painkiller given usually as a pain patch. I was completely dumbfounded. As she sat there explaining it to me, my brain was on overload; I was not prepared for this and I didn't quite believe what I was hearing come from her mouth. Despite my showing her that I was completely unable to handle having a prescription for opiates around, she was going to push me even further into an addiction which I openly admitted to her not ten minutes before that I was completely unable to control and which I was scared to death of ruining my life. Her theory, which sounded stupid even to me, even then, was that once I became accustomed to the OxyContin, she would remove the Norco in less than a thirty day period. She would then slowly start weaning me off of the OxyContin until I was no longer taking any opiates at all by the end of sixty days. I think her belief was that, since I wasn't used to OxyContin, she would take me off of it before I could get used to it. Basically, she was using it as a tool to wean me off the Norco. Okay I'm just going to say what I'm sure you are sitting there thinking right now as your jaw hit the floor...WHAT AND THE HELL WAS THIS STUPID, STUPID WOMAN THINKING? That would be like weaning a patient off of cocaine by introducing them to methamphetamine, because, like Oxycontin and Norco, methamphetamine is the far stronger and more addicting drug...but rather than argue with her, it hit me, and a smile came over my face, when the thought crossed my mind that all of the reasons Norco no longer gave me the amazing, exciting high it once did and had begun causing me to become depressed, wouldn't yet be an issue with the Oxycontin, because it was new to me. Which meant that soon I was going to be back in business baby! Flying high as a kite, feeling I was King of the world, like I owned the mother fucking universe! It was all over. I did not care about anything else that came out of her mouth from that moment forward. I was addicted to OxyContin before I even took the very first pill. And it was all her idea.

It's accurate to say I had no idea what OxyContin was nor did I have any knowledge why it was prescribed before that day at my doctor's office. So I began researching this mysterious drug, powerful and destructive enough to kill over one hundred people every single day in the United States., just as I always research thoroughly things which I have no knowledge about but should. The internet is an amazing, wonderful, fantastic resource. I am definitely not too proud to admit when I'm ignorant to a particular subject. I spend hours and hours of research. Give me a moment to share with you a little bit of what I discovered over the course of researching OxyContin. Before I get to the worst discovery I ended up making, which most people are unaware of, let me give you some statistics on OxyContin in the U.S:

  • For every one death from prescription painkillers in the United States, 32 people enter treatment (rehab) for painkiller addiction.
  • Worse yet, for the same one death, 130 people currently abuse prescription painkillers.
  • And 825 people--over 800 times the one death I mentioned--are taking narcotic, prescription painkillers without a prescription.

This highly addictive narcotic is quite different than any other opiate on the market in one crucial way. Let me rephrase that: OxyContin differs in one despicable, unethical way-- and it's that one thing which should've prevented Purdue Pharmaceuticals from ever getting the approval from the Food & Drug Administration to market OxyContin in the first place! What the maker of OxyContin did to ensure they sold good as well as to ensure that OxyContin was the highest selling opiate painkiller of all-time: they put an additive in the OxyContin formula as a "filler", they claimed it was--a filler which would cause the patient taking it to become tolerant of their current dose, whatever dose that may be; not to mention, though, the awful truth that OxyContin would manipulate the receptors in the brain, basically trick the brain in to sending signals {to the area where there is the most pain} that there is excruciating pain there--which would trick the brain in to thinking the body needed more OxyContin; what would happen, in other words, is that the brain would be tricked into believing that the dose of Oxycontin wasn't strong enough to relieve the level of pain the user was experiencing, which would cause one reaction by the user--take more Oxycontin. But it was overlooked, this new filler, due to the fact that all medications have fillers of some kind, usually they are harmless. It would happen at different times for different people, but most patients would lose any inhibition or reservation and/or guilt about taking more medication because they would truly believe that they needed more for pain relief. It would only be a matter of time before the person would eventually increase the dose. I did not understand the ramifications of what I had just read whatsoever. It made no sense to me, had no impact on me at the time I initially read this, because to me It was just one more excuse for me to have this narcotic in my body.

Still in Pain, Yet here I am on the Maximum Dose of the Strongest Painkiller on the Market?

Oxycontin--You're Up!

It was easy for me to get off the Norco. I honestly can't believe my Doctor thought putting me on an even stronger opiate than I was on, would be anything BUT easy for me. I was only taking a couple of Norco each day and now that I had OxyContin, the Norco was insignificant to me. Despite the fact that I was taking a painkiller that cancer patients require, the day I threw the remaining 15-20 Norco away like a "big girl", I literally felt a sense of pride, as if I had done something truly magnificent. She started me off at 40mg twice per day, 80mg total. I have since discovered that just my starting dose alone was nearly deadly; a normal starting dose for someone taking OxyContin for the very first time is 10-20mg per day at the very maximum. My Doctor was extremely uneducated, or at least undereducated, on the dangers of prescribing too much OxyContin as well as what an appropriate starting dose is. I had been taking OxyContin for several weeks before I even really felt any different on it. I didn't feel any high, any type of euphoria. I'm not sure how to explain that, but it seems as though for me, I needed to have OxyContin in my system for a period of time before it would manifest itself in me via euphoria or, as I like to call it, the "I'm SUPERWOMAN!" complex. Let me just say this one thing: I won't be forgetting anytime soon how I felt the first time that OxyContin gave me a buzz. More like a buzzzzzzzz...... It was absolutely, positively the most amazing feeling in the ENTIRE world, and so much better than Norco could even dream it was. You know how people can say where they were when The Challenger exploded in the 80's or what they were precisely doing when John F. Kennedy was assassinated in the 60s? Well I can tell you where I was AND what I was precisely doing the first time I caught an OxyContin was October 27th of 2009 and it was an extremely warm day for autumn...I was out in our garage cleaning it as my husband asked me to; I was a bit glum in the process because cleaning the garage and folding laundry are my two "I will do anything but this" things I hate, and then all of a sudden...I just about fell down it hit me so hard. Kind of like the first time a woman has an orgasm, the feeling is, well... just indescribable.. It was fantastic. Orgasmic doesn't do it justice! There should be a word invented that is actually in the dictionary that means "the first time a person experiences a very intense and fantastic high from OxyContin--" I started to sing out loud, it was a very memorable experience. And once again, I was hooked. Just from that one time. From then on, pretty much every single time I took my dose of those two little peachy-cream little pills, I could expect that about 43 minutes later I would be feeling awesome again. It was a feeling that I came to live for each day. The high from OxyContin lasted longer than the high from any other drug I have ever tried and/or any other drug I have knowledge of. I would guess that Heroin would be very similar since it too is an opiate; heroin and OxyContin more closely resemble each other than any other two opiates ever made. But even with that in mind, OxyContin is I believe longer than heroin, which is another reason its such a problem. I remember the high lasting for several hours. Actually, that is similar to ecstasy, or MDMA. I became insanely addicted to that high; there was seldom a time it wasn't just as good as the first time I felt it.

About a week after the incident where I had the sudden, intense pain-- and a month after I began taking OxyContin--I was outside trimming my rose bushes, nothing strenuous whatsoever, when all of a sudden an intense throbbing pain, completely out of nowhere, went shooting through the entire area of my back. It hurt worse even than the fracture I had gotten at the restaurant, and to be honest, it scared me a little bit. No it scared me a lot. I had never felt pain in my back like this, and the fact that I hadn't done anything at all to cause me to start having pain really scared me even more. I went in the house and sat on the couch, fully expecting it to pass; I was almost certain I had bent over the wrong way or turned the wrong way. I was on the couch about a half-hour when I decided to get up and get something to drink. And OH MY GOD! This pain took over my entire back again, and I couldn't move. Every time I moved even a fraction of an inch, pain went to every nerve-ending in my entire body and I literally cried out for my friend to come help me. She, too, was very shocked and concerned. With her help I got down to the floor, she handed me my phone after dialing my Doctor, and I told them it was an emergency and I needed to speak to Dr Dominguez-Jones immediately! I couldn't believe how fast they put her on (I was sobbing and screaming at the same time). As soon as I heard her voice I began sobbing harder and explained to her what had happened. She told me she was going to increase my OxyContin dosage from 80mg per day to 160mg per day. It seemed high--double the current dose--but again, I trusted her. She told me to take the extra two pills at lunch time from now on, and to take the extras now. She also said that if I didn't need the extras, not to take them. She told me I could find a new scrip for the adjusted amount in her office.

The maximum dose of OxyContin that can be prescribed to ANYONE, whether it's someone with chronic back pain like me, or someone who has advanced cancer, is 240mg. I felt a little nervous but again, I very naively trusted her, despite the alarm that was very nervously and deliberately going off in my head telling me this is crazy! This is crazy! This is crazy! Except that here's the problem with what she had just done. About another two weeks later, the same exact thing happened to my back--I went grocery shopping and when I went to grab a bag of groceries out of my Infiniti to carry in the house, I got halfway down, which wasn't far because the Infiniti has a huge, high trunk--I felt that same intense throbbing pain I had the last time..I had never felt pain like this and I have no idea what was going on or where this was coming from, but I immediately called my Doctor, again. My Doctor once again increased my dose by 80mg. I was now at 240mg. but this is insane for me to be at this dose and I knew that, despite my excitement over the euphoria I would certainly feel on this high dose I already knew what the withdrawals from Norco felt like, I don't even want to know how OxyContin WDs feel. According to my research, the stronger the opiate, the worse the withdrawals. Another two weeks later, guess what? My back went out again. But this time it was more painful than the last, and I didn't think that was even possible. Since I knew there was nothing my Doctor could do since I was already taking the maximum amount, I was painfully aware that I needed to get a hold of myself. I just couldn't do it. From that day forward, I started adjusting my own dose by an extra two pills each time. I didn't think to myself at the time what damage I was ultimately doing by increasing my dose each time this happened; it was happening now approximately every 1-2 weeks; the episodes of my back going out were getting closer together. But I also knew how much the pain hurt and I refused to be miserable, laid up in a bed unable to move. So I decided to take my chances and continue on. I had no idea what I was doing to myself.

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Feeling awful, all you can think about at this stage is getting more opiates in your system, because you know that will make it all go away.An opiate addict cannot have any opiates at all in the house, or the addict will always be thinking of getting in to them. It's a constant struggle: wanting to be clean but wanting to feel good, too. At one point, my Dr wrote 4 separate prescriptions for me in a 30-day period due to increases, and it was as though she forgot what she had already given me. I had 4 bottles- 3 with 180 pills (40mg each) and 1 bottle with 90 pills (80mg each).
Feeling awful, all you can think about at this stage is getting more opiates in your system, because you know that will make it all go away.
Feeling awful, all you can think about at this stage is getting more opiates in your system, because you know that will make it all go away. | Source
An opiate addict cannot have any opiates at all in the house, or the addict will always be thinking of getting in to them. It's a constant struggle: wanting to be clean but wanting to feel good, too.
An opiate addict cannot have any opiates at all in the house, or the addict will always be thinking of getting in to them. It's a constant struggle: wanting to be clean but wanting to feel good, too. | Source
At one point, my Dr wrote 4 separate prescriptions for me in a 30-day period due to increases, and it was as though she forgot what she had already given me. I had 4 bottles- 3 with 180 pills (40mg each) and 1 bottle with 90 pills (80mg each).
At one point, my Dr wrote 4 separate prescriptions for me in a 30-day period due to increases, and it was as though she forgot what she had already given me. I had 4 bottles- 3 with 180 pills (40mg each) and 1 bottle with 90 pills (80mg each). | Source
These are the bad effects of opiate use/addiction and also the long-term effects of opiate addiction..
These are the bad effects of opiate use/addiction and also the long-term effects of opiate addiction..

The End is Near, Scary but Necessary...

Another six weeks or so passed and as bizarre and unbelievable as it may sound, I am recalling the facts completely accurately and not exaggerating any part of any of this recount. One day I woke up and had gone to my brother's house the night before, because my husband and I were fighting (he ended up moving out, he "couldn't handle" it anymore)... I went to take my normal morning dose of Oxys, I was usually careful not to do it when anyone was around, I was very careful not to let anyone know the amount I was taking...but I had been in a daze and wasn't being as attentive to what I was doing. Then I hear my brother go, "Jen! What are you doing? I know you aren't supposed to be taking all of those!" And the look of sheer terror and worry on his face really stopped me dead in my track. I told him "Oh I'm not taking all of these, I was just counting them...." Phew, nice save... I decided to really count my pills, just tor the heck of it. I had realized during the night when I woke up and laid there stressing myself out-- I hadn't been keeping track of how much I had increased my dose over the past six weeks. I mean, come's only two pills all day.. I just hadn't done the math. I nearly had a heart attack when I counted the amount of 40mg OxyContin I was taking each day...I must be dreaming....I was taking 18 of the 40mg pills, that's 720mg every day, give or take (there were days I even took an extra one or two). I was taking 7 pills in the morning when I woke up, 4 at lunch, and 7 more after dinner. That was absurd. I was now scared. The thought crossed my mind that I was going to have to get off of these. What was I thinking all this time? How did I let this happen? I would have to go to my Doctor, admit what had happened, and tell her how much I did not mean for this to get so far out of control. What was she going to say? I can't even imagine--what if she drops me from her care, and I don't have a way to get OxyContin and have to quit without any help? How would I explain to my family, my husband--why I had been discharged from her practice? What was everyone going to say? I was not prepared to deal with what was surely to come.

All I Want To Do Is DIE RIgHT NoW

This is how a person going through OxyContin withdrawals feel.
This is how a person going through OxyContin withdrawals feel.
This painting depicts the feeling a person has when experiencing opiate withdrawal--isolation, terror, pain, and every other symptom you can imagine a person having while experiencing opiate withdrawal.
This painting depicts the feeling a person has when experiencing opiate withdrawal--isolation, terror, pain, and every other symptom you can imagine a person having while experiencing opiate withdrawal.

Time to Get My Life Together...

I went to my Doctor a total of three times between December 27, 2009 and the last week of January 2010. I was extraordinarily up front with her and I wasn't ashamed a bit when I begged her to help me get off of these....I told her that I had resorted to increasing them on my own because the pain kept getting worse and worse and I didn't know what else to do. I didn't think it would get this out of hand. Though she understood and didn't hold it against me or discharge from her practice at that time, The third time I went to her, I told her the seriousness of the problem. She responded to me with the following words, which completely shocked me, "Jennifer, I don't have any expertise in getting anyone off of OxyContin who is at a dose as high as yours...I'm going to have to refer you to Pain Management and they will start weaning you down". Here's the only problem. The referral never went through. Over the next two weeks and twenty+ messages on the voice mail of the Pain Management Clinic, I decided to take matters in to my own hands: I had no other choice but to wean myself down off the OxyContin. It was the most difficult and miserable thing I've ever gone through, the whole entire thing. I was in disbelief over being basically shunned by the very person who had put me on these in the first place. Over the next three months, I weaned myself down 1 pill at a time (except the amount I was over the prescribed dose, I dropped down 3-4 pills at a time, because if I didn't the amount of time I took to get off would be longer than the amount of time I had been on it). At first I put my brother's wife in charge of my pills; she kept them in her possession at all times, and she was to give me my daily dose every day or every other day give me two days worth. She couldn't handle it. Apparently it was "too stressful" for her. So I put my mother in charge, and she was great about it. I knew that the longer I took to get myself off of these pills, the more addicted I was going to become and the longer it was going to ultimately take for me to get back to normal. I was scared to death of what was going to happen, and I tried so hard not to think about it. There was one or two times since starting OxyContin where I was forced to feel the withdrawals, one time I was one pill too short and had to go without my afternoon full dose, and by bedtime I was feeling pretty much like I wanted to die; I had the chills one minute, cold sweats the next; I was burning up but shivering, it was crazy strange. Then by midnight, my skin was burning and felt as though bugs were crawling on my skin. Not the way they say people who abuse methamphetamine think that they have bugs crawling under their skin, which leads to them picking at their skin. This is not at all like that. The "bugs" sensation I'm referring to is a feeling almost as though you are laying there completely naked rolling around in a large bin full of soft feathers which, while soft, are similar to a scratchy, itchy angorra sweater. The stem of the feathers are often times pointed and they feel very scratchy and uncomfortable. In addition to that, there was an overwhelming feeling of anxiety that hit me and it caused me to have restless leg syndrome, and I had to literally shake my legs and feet every 30-60 seconds and not be able to sleep. I would toss and turn at night because my skin was so miserable. How was I going to do this? I was terrified. That was from being shorted one pill out of six. One pill.

Three months later I had a knee surgery that caused me to take a little longer to get off opiates than I had hoped, but I was forced to quit immediately after overdosing on OxyContin when my mother left a brand new bottle of 180 pills straight from the pharmacy sitting on my kitchen counter and then went to the restroom, without even thinking about it. I quickly snatched that bottle of pills up (before she remembered and came back for them) without even thinking about it, and I took 20 of them, all at once, biting more than half of them in to pieces. At the time that occurred, my Mom and I had weaned me down to only two pills per day. I was pretty proud of myself, too...yet I didn't hesistate to jump at the chance before me. Because I had weaned down to such a small amount the past few months, the twenty pills I took were such a huge shock to my system that I was rendered unconscious about six to seven hours later (due to the pills being extended release) and my mother called 911, not knowing at all what had happened--until she counted the pills left in the bottle. I went into a coma-like state and was in the hospital for five days. When I came out of that OxyContin-stupor, my husband refused to speak to me and gave me an ultimatum-- "get off the OxyContin or lose your family", and he wouldn't let me see my kids. I completely did not understand his reaction, if he would have been paying attention he would have seen that I had decreased my daily OxyContin consumption a great deal, and that I had relapsed one time. I did not intend on relapsing again. Nevertheless, I found a rehab center but because our health insurance would only cover 6 days of treatment, we paid for 4 additional days out-of-pocket so I could get at least ten days of treatment. I spent ten days completely involved in that program: going to classes from 8:00 a.m. until about 6:00 p.m. The first day I thought it was overkill on the educational portion, but I quickly realized that was exactly what I needed. I got very involved in it and I was absolutely ready to be clean and sober for the rest of my life...

The Cycle Of Addiction--So Difficult to Escape

**I Finally Did It!**

I finally got my life straight, and I'm no longer taking opiates. It took over four years, but I learned some valuable lessons during that time, all which I'm putting in the book I'm writing...
I finally got my life straight, and I'm no longer taking opiates. It took over four years, but I learned some valuable lessons during that time, all which I'm putting in the book I'm writing...

The Truth About OxyContin...

It was while I was in rehab at MPI Treatment Center of Oakland that I learned what I mentioned earlier, that Purdue Pharmaceuticals, the maker of OxyContin, adds something to the fillers in the pills in order to manipulate the brain to send pain signals telling the person to take more OxyContin to get rid of the pain. I was feeling like I had been scammed, like I was a pawn for Purdue and I reacted to those severe instances of pain which came out of nowhere just how they hoped. It seems highly unethical that they get away with manipulating a drug in that way-a drug that's only available by prescription from a licensed Physician-in such a deliberate way to increase their sales. When I got out of that treatment center and had been home a few weeks, I took some time and researched that information I had learned in treatment, I just didn't see how that could be true, I did find it to be true, which is not what I was expecting. That was five years ago, I don't remember where it was I found that information, but I saw it with my own two eyes and because of the state of mind I was in, I didn't think to write it down. That same information is now nowhere to be found online, unfortunately. It's very possible that if, in fact, that was true at one time, Purdue may have stopped, but who knows for sure. Companies like Purdue Pharmaceuticals do whatever they want, unethical or not, and will stop at nothing to be rich, at the expense, unfortunately, of people like me.

The Ending, Sad in Ways, Yet Happy...

I came home from the treatment center feeling worse than I had at anytime while I was in there. I talked my Doctor in to giving me a week's worth of Subutex, which I got in treatment, but she told me before she prescribed the week's worth that she would not be able to give me any more beyond that. She told me where to look for a Doctor who can prescribe it, which I did, and wasn't lucky. I didn't realize it at the time, but looking back, that Subutex actually made me feel extremely high--and that was why I wanted it so bad. I spent more time online researching opiates- particularly oxycontin withdrawals; from what I discovered, the amount of time it takes to start having withdrawals from the time of the last dose of Oxycontin is 7-10 days, not 1-3 days like with Norco. So when I came home from treatment, I hadn't yet even begun having the severe withdrawals. The day I found that fact out, was day 10. When I discovered that, I lost it and just hysterically cried my eyes out and started screaming at the top of my lungs how much I hated life! I wanted to die! I wanted someone to come in and just shoot me, please! I threw stuff all around the house and just trashed my downstairs family room. It was the one time in my life that I felt anger and lost control, just completely lost control. I thought I had already been through the worst of it--it had only begun for me. It was the most frustrating feeling, and there was nothing I could do about it.

Two months after coming home from treatment, I still was feeling awful. I had no energy (literally, if I walked up my stairs, I had to lay down and rest or I would pass out), I had anxiety inside and out, and then the absolute worst part of it was when the depression hit. I thought all of the physical symptoms were unbearable, but there was nothing as bad as the depression. I never knew what real depression was until that time of my life. Right after the depression hit, things got even worse in my house: my brother-in-law died suddenly and it put my husband in a state of mind I had never seen him in- he was so distraught and in shock over losing his oldest brother that he became a very verbally abusive man for a few weeks, and that made me sink even lower into the hole I was already in. I could tell you the details of what happened the next three or four months, but not only would you be unable to comprehend it all (because that many awful things just don't happen to one person) but also this hub would become an entire book, and I don't want anyone to think it's fictional. What I do want to make sure to include in this part of my story is how I did stay off of OxyContin for good; though I did try it one time after my car accident (that's coming up) because I couldn't get anymore Norco from my Doctor, and I discovered then that I had overloaded the receptors in my brain which are affected by opiates so much that OxyContin no longer did anything at all for me. However, four months after I got out of treatment, I had become so incredibly depressed that I went out driving after drinking one day and was in a terrible car accident when I veered off the road and hit a tree, and not having my seat belt on caused me to fly through the windshield and hit the tree as well. It caused some permanent damage to my head, face, and neck, and naturally I was put on Norco. Because of that, I spent the next two years trying to get off of Norco again and I was more miserable than ever. My husband and I had genuinely made an effort at fixing our problems and having the wonderful marriage we once did, but we ended up not being able to stand each other anymore and last year, he moved out permanently.

I have now been totally clean for just under a year. My husband and I split up just days after I quit Norco for good last year. The way that things have gone since I first got on Norco in 2008 has really changed the way I see life, the way I see the world. I know my life would be so different right now had I never let Norco take it over back then, and things would be so different right now. But I have made a lot of very positive progress the past year: I began writing a book about my entire experience with addiction, Norco, OxyContin, and getting clean, and I'm hoping that I'm able to help other people who have been in the same place as me. I would never wish addiction on anyone, being an addict- living life as an addict- is such a sad, awful thing and it puts you in such a bad state of mind. I will never forget how lonely I felt when I was using. I had no one, at least that's how I felt at the time. And I used to wish I had never gone through all of the things I did, but now I'm grateful for everything that has happened, because it has made me a stronger person, and it has given me the opportunity to really make a difference. The last point I want to make is that it was OxyContin that made the biggest negative impact on my life and I knew that first day when I had that awful back pain that this was a drug that needed to be off the market permanently. I want to help people who have been in the same hell as me, it was a long, ugly road. I was hooked immediately on OxyContin whereas with Norco, I didn't give it much thought for quite a few months after I began taking it. If telling my story helped even one person who was caught up in addiction, it would be a fantastic thing. Please, if you or someone you know has a problem with OxyContin, get them in touch with me. I want to help!

You may hear about me again, being an advocate for the ending of OxyContin's reign in America.


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    • profile image


      17 months ago

      Jenn, wow first thank you for having the unbelievable strength to share your story I must say u just gave me the first bit of hope I've felt in so long. It's unbelievable how I can relate to your every word and I also know what it's Luke to feel like the medical field failed you not just failed but actually caused this life destroying addiction but then left you alone to deal with it. The same thing happened to me and I also started on norcos then to oxy. I am on the third day of no pills and my god is it bad. The depression you described is so accurate. Thinking back, the Dr who originally started me on norco is the reason why even now I'm terrified and humiliated to the point were I can't bring myself to ask for help and I have hidden my addiction from everyone I love who I have pushed away and I mean everyone. I have isolated myself from the people I've been closest too my entire life and I am now so absolutely alone and just realizing that is enough to make me just say I can't and want a pill. I destroyed my career of course steeling to buy pills, I destroyed all my relationships because when you are hiding the thing that is your whole life u can't keep healthy relationships and as long as I got my oxy I didn't care. It's been five years of addiction and in that time I have become someone I don't even know, I have lost everything and everyone, and to be honest right now tone hat feels like its too much like I could never fix it all and that's were I am right now. As I was saying my Dr experience has left me feeling like I can't as for help I feel completely ashamed. The Dr who first gave me notcos and discovered inbecomee addicted , he didn't even offer help, there was no understanding, it was pure shame. My last Dr spot I will never forget. I went into the room and when he entered I could already feel that something was wrong. He immediately began asking me when I filled my script how often I filled it were when how etc. He then said that everytime I call in a refill he is noticed. Now any one who is an addict I'm sure can relate to desperately trying to have the pharmacy refill early. Well that was it, he then almost yelling now told me that I'm abusing my medication, that I could ruin his career and he can get into trouble. Heathen said he could non longer see me again. I was being pretty much yelled at, lectured, shamed, and absolutely humiliated beyond belief. I walked out in tears before the fear hit of knowing I had no Dr and no more scripts. This Dr who I'd seen for years had just made me feel like I had truly done something terrible and that I couldn't ask for help nor did I deserve it. I was utterly shamed for becoming addicted to the pain pills he had prescribed and right there became the start of the worst five years of my life as well as the beginning of my addiction to oxy. You perfectly described the switch it's unreal. So here I am now addicted

    • profile image


      21 months ago

      Please nobody ever take suboxone! I don't have time to write a list on the reasons why but I took it for 2+ years and it makes your life bare able for others to be around you but in NO WAY HELPS YOU (the real person inside who needs the help) it's a nasty bandaid...if you or anyone is thinking about taking suboxone please read some information on line from others personal experience. I didn't believe it at first and right in the midst of withdrawal's we would give anything for that magic pill. And that's the bad part the pharmaceutical company finds us at the lowest low the worst of our most vunerable and difficult times and ask us if we want to try their candy. God who wouldn't (having been there myself). I'm not preaching and maybe someone our there can find something good to say about suboxone but it's just another way to manage being addicted. I'll tell you something else, the withdrawal from suboxone is a huge 3 week long drawn out proscess worse than any heroin, oxy, feltynal withdrawal you will ever experience, and it physically changes your brain and the "feel good" receptors in it forever. If you want to find a for sure way to never find happiness again than try suboxone I PROMISE after (if you ever are able to have a moment of clarity again) you will be saying the same thing I am. This is the worst of the worst in the drug works because at least with opioid addiction weather it be pills, iv heroin, or patches we know the evils we are dealing with and we don't know that with subixone. There is no long term tests and a doctor can become a certified subocone prescriber aND essentially run their own rehab (get rich quick off of your chronic disease) after only 8 hours of clinical time, writing a paper on their experience of the how and why, take a test and of course pay a fee, than their certified to be your new dealer. Another consequence to be thought about I found out in the hard way is thi's follows you forever. You won't likely be prescribed pain mess again for any reason. I had a massive tooth infection and nobody would touch me. I am a mother of two (one of my kids is diabetic t1) and I had to resort to sighing whiskey to deal with this extraordinary tooth pain because nobody would touch me with or with out narcotic pain meds. I have a back fusion coming up too so I'm in treated to see what will happen. All in all this was an awesome story and I totally telate, it did help to remind me and humble me about the things us addicts seem to forget when faced with instant gratification. I hope if you are looking for an easy way out of addiction you can't be fooled into thinking there is one..there is no easy way out honey, but anything worth having is worth working for.

    • WaismannMethod profile image


      3 years ago

      We see patients like you all of the time, it just takes a simple accident like falling on your tailbone to change your life, really happy that you got help and are living opiate -free.


    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Hi Jenni,

      Thank you so much for sharing. So happy that you are clean of the chemicals and have your life back. Sorry to hear that your husband is on them now, one would think after seeing what you went through he would not touch that crap.

      I myself am in my early 30’s and I used to be a very heavy drug user and was addicted to a number of them over the years.

      My experience with Oxycontin is very similar to yours. It started after I got 3 teeth pulled on the same day. The OC drugs my doc gave me didn’t do anything for me and I was in serious pain and could not sleep at all. So I went to another Dr. who prescribed me Oxycontin almost like he was handing out candy.

      No warning, nothing about addiction I started off popping 20mgs in the late evening. It was great at 1st and I slept well and really enjoyed the buzz. Over a period of 8 months the addiction escalated from 20mgs per day to 1000 mgs per day, at the end was taking almost a bottle per day and I knew I was in serious trouble.

      Finally I checked into Detox and thus began the hardest 12 days of my life. I could not eat, sleep or drink any liquids. I puked my brains out every day I was in so much pain I did not know if I was hot or cold. Basically I was sicker than a dog with constant sweating, dehydration and my legs and muscles kicking all day and all night.

      Detoxing off Oxy like any opiate your legs go crazy. That is why they call it ¨Kicking the Habit¨ Once the physical withdrawals had subsided I was so weak I could not get out of bed thus began a slow rebuilding of my strength (I took vitamins and ate fish every day).

      There were a number of jaw dropping moments reading about your experience; first came when your completely uneducated Dr. put you on the Oxy at 40mgs per pop to start. You might have died.

      Then when you described that horrible shooting pain in your back and how this is caused by the ¨filler¨ they put in their on purpose to make you take more. I experienced the EXACT SAME THING and seriously thought there was something wrong with my back. I did not give it much thought by now sitting here I remember once I was off the Oxys that pain mysteriously vanished. Unreal that Purdue could get away with this evening going so far as erasing any writing on this off the net.

      Although I appreciate the amount of research you have done on Oxy you are an expert no doubt but your lack of experience on other drugs shows. Please don’t take this the wrong way. Again I really appreciate your knowledge on Oxy I just have to point this out.

      As an ex heavy user of Cocaine, Heroin, Meth & Ecstasy I can tell you that your research on these drugs is deeply flawed. There is so much misinformation out there especially on the net that unless you have not been a heavy user of any of these drugs its hard to know what they really do to you.

      You state that Meth is strong then Cocaine. No way this is just plain wrong. There is a very good reason they call meth the ¨poor man’s coke¨ Cocaine is 10 times better then Meth will ever be on a hit per hit basis but here is where the confusion is. When you freebase pure Cocaine in rock form it leaves your system very quickly while the Meth stays in your system and starts to build up. So while you are binging on either drug the Meth builds up in your system to the point where you go absolutely crazy and start seeing things that are not there. Meth is also a deeply flawed man made chemical that causes a lot more damage to your body then the coke will. So while freebasing Cocaine will give you a much, much better high then Meth ever well, Meth will cause your physical appearance to deteriorate much faster.

      *It is important to remember that when I say freebasing I am not referring to stepped on crap like crack or even coke found in the US. I am talking about 100% pure pink Cocaine straight from Peru or Bolivia. When you cook 1 pure gram of Cocaine exactly .089 of pure rock comes back. That’s the stuff I am talking about; very difficult to find in US but sold in abundance down south.

      You stated also that one might compare that 1st real high from Oxy to Ecstasy. This is just plain wrong. Oxy will never give you the high that real X does just like it will never give you the high you get from injecting some good Heroin. Most ppl in the US have never even used real X as the precursor chemicals are highly controlled and not available there so chemists make similar drugs such as MDEA or any number of crappy copies, mix it with heroin and Meth and sell the pills as X. That is not Ecstasy. To find real X you have to go to Holland, make some connections, go to nightclubs in Amsterdam and you can find the Real Dutch Ecstasy which is 150mgs pure MDMA + 100mgs pure MDA. Do one of those puppies and it will knock you so far on your ass you won’t be able to talk and it will give getting a high a whole new meaning; actually after years of drug use I can say that real Dutch X is the best high currently available on the planet. Orgasm? Forget about it this is 100 times better.

      I would like to conclude by thanking you again for the great information. I learned several things about this terrible drug I did not know before. I am so happy for you that you have your life back and are free of that crap. I am grateful every day that goes by that I don’t have to use 1000mgs of Oxy and waste all that $ and be sacred that I am about to overdose. Detoxing off that crap was a nightmare I would not wish on my worst enemy.

      I think that all drugs are just a big lie. Like the Devil they promise you instant gratification and peace from either physical pain or mental anguish but what they take away from you in the end is 10X the little relief the offered in the 1st place.

    • SpaceShanty profile image


      4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Thank you for sharing your story. Here in the UK, as we have free healthcare there is not such a prescription based drug market, we rarely get prescribed opiate-like painkillers and after reading this I think it is a good thing!

      Shared and voted up.

      I wish you all the best for the future.


    • lulubelle7537 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jen Stockton 

      5 years ago from Colorado Springs. CO


      I apologize for that horrible piece of writing I responded to your very kind comment with. I was exhausted to the point of being sick--I fell asleep while responding. Thank you for taking the time to give me a little bit of support and encouragement on this--you have no idea how deeply my experience with the Doctors has been forever altered~ I will never feel normal again going to the Doctor, and although you have had good experiences and cannot possibly relate, let me tell you this: the way that Doctors have treated me ever since the Oxycontin ordeal has been reprehensible, Beck. I have had two Doctors refuse to take me as a a patient when I arrived for my first appointment; my most recent Doctor jerked me around for 18 months, telling me lies about the insurance company and my coverage just to get me out of her office. I finally realized what was happening. I called her and left her over 30 messages between January and June of 2012 and she refused to call me back. Then, she had caller id put on her medical office phone; they began refusing my calls and sending them to voice mail after two or three rings; I also realized that was happening, and the reason I know for sure is because she had her receptionist answer it and promise me she would make sure to have Dr. Reddy call me right away, well it never happened and you just gave me a fantastic idea--I have so much more I can say Beck but I'm working on a nonfiction piece right now for a contest, lets talk more about this when we get together. I would like to know specifically how you were treated different than me--we'll check it out together!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Jen, as much as you have already told me about what you went through, it was still fascinating and extremely interesting to read! The way you wrote it was wonderful, as if I was right there with you. One thing that does sadden me (being someone who has always worked in the medical field and who loves it), is how the medical field failed you. I take for granted at times how lucky I am to not only have an awesome doctor (I've had the same one for going on 17-18years now), but to have many connections just through work, making my experiences very pleasant with a good outcome. However, I know its not this way for everyone. I know you feel as though this whole experience with your doctor was unjust, and that you feel cheated in a way-which in all fairness you have been. I can only hope that someday the one area/field (medical) that I love and respect in so many ways will be able to come through for you. Wonderful blog, Jen!

    • lulubelle7537 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jen Stockton 

      5 years ago from Colorado Springs. CO

      OH trust me, T-R-U-S-T--M-E I have tried! He says that he has to have them in order to work. He's going to be 52 in November. and you're absolutely right, they don't do anything long-term (except make you have withdrawals when you try to stop them) so I will DEFINITELY suggest a DO. Thank you so much for that!

    • Austinstar profile image


      5 years ago from Somewhere near the center of Texas

      I'm amazed that your husband will take them after watching what happened to you. Maybe you should suggest that he get to a pain specialist as soon as possible.

      Doctors are not always right about things. They frequently get things wrong. It's possible that you and he need to keep looking for the right doctor. I will suggest looking for a D.O. as they treat the whole body and not just the symptoms like M.D.s do.

      I have seen D.O.s work true medical miracles. It's the way they are taught to approach medicine. M.D.s never learn the right way to treat people.

      That's Doctor of Osteopathy if you are unfamiliar with the term D.O.

      You might even try a good nutritionist or acupuncture, massage therapy, other alternative methods.

      Opiates will never cure what is wrong, they just mask the pain and other symptoms. When the opiate wears off, you still have the pain, so what's the point?

    • lulubelle7537 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jen Stockton 

      5 years ago from Colorado Springs. CO

      You have no idea how difficult it is. You have to remember that opiates aren't going to do the same thing to everyone. I'll tell you one thing--no one was more against me being on these than my husband; he is now, after two years, taking at least 2-3 pills per day--he used to swear he wouldn't ever EVER take more than 1-2 per WEEK. His pain has increased. It just happened faster for me. I hope it doesn't escalate for your husband either. It is a hell I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy, and I'm not just saying that. Thanks for your comment :)

    • Austinstar profile image


      5 years ago from Somewhere near the center of Texas

      Pills are such an easy out. My husband is now up to one or two Vicodin per day plus a Soma. This has been going on for years. He just won't go through the withdrawal at all. I'm hoping it doesn't escalate.

    • lulubelle7537 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jen Stockton 

      5 years ago from Colorado Springs. CO

      Austinstar~ It's so bizarre that even taking one pill, two max per week that you get withdrawals, it just blows me away. Imagine what the withdrawals were like after nearly a thousand mg per day of OxyContin, which is about ten times as strong mg to mg. I'm so proud of you for only taking what you do. I just found out yesterday that my husband, who was very VERY against my taking pills for pain, is now taking several pills per DAY and he was just like you for about two years, only taking one to two per week if even that. He is now prescribed 240 Norco a month and since we don't live together anymore, I have no idea how many he takes but I'm sure it's a lot, and it scares the hell out of me because he takes them so he can work. He's quite a bit older than me and starting to have real serious pains doing the physical work he does every day...I am scared because my good friend from highschool was prescribed Norco a couple months ago for the first time and she got over one hundred pills the first time. Anyway thank you for sharing and I hope to hear from you soon, I'm working on a Hub now...thanks for the good wishes.

      Lulubelle :-)

    • Austinstar profile image


      5 years ago from Somewhere near the center of Texas

      Oh, that's just great, a pill that keeps you from taking another pill. I've never heard of Suboxone and hope I never have to take it.

      At times I feel dependent on hydrocodone. I have taken one or two a week since I became disabled and unable to work three years ago. Fortunately, I do not have what is commonly called an "addictive personality".

      I say I am dependent, because I actually need to kill the pain sometimes and when ibuprofen isn't enough, I am forced to take a Norco. However, I refuse to take more than one or more than two per week. I just won't.

      I know the withdrawal is much worse than the pain. Even at the low doses I am taking. I still get the sweating and hot flashes and desire to take another pill, but I don't.

      I agree that Oxycontin should be banned. Probably Hydrocodone too. I wish they would bring back plain old codeine, but they won't. It's just as bad, but it's a lot cheaper!

      Having worked in the medical field for 34 years, I've seen a lot of drugs come and go and you are correct - Oxycontin is the worst. Glad to hear you are writing a book about it. I hope it goes viral :-)

    • profile image

      Jules Monroe 

      5 years ago

      Wonderful piece of work you have here, I too am a former Oxycontin addict and I too almost let it ruin my life. Fantastic writing, I'm just super happy I found this because it made a huge impact on me and made me feel like I was right there experiencing what you went thru. I'm so glad you made it out alive, not everyone does.

    • johndavids8778 profile image

      John Davidson 

      5 years ago from Richmond, Virginia

      Wow Jen, awesome job on this article! So well written, I am extraordinarily impressed as well as touched by the beautiful way you put your thoughts, feelings, emotions in to the most perfect of words. I am awe-stricken and want everyone I know to read this!! Awesome job, awesome awesome job Jen!

    • lulubelle7537 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jen Stockton 

      5 years ago from Colorado Springs. CO

      Yes I spent days & days researching subutex and suboxone and methadone, I'm writing a Hub right now about methadone, I hope you'll check it out. So glad you found something that works for you. I finally got on methadone and have very mixed emotions about it. If you'd like to talk more, I'd love to get in touch with someone who has been where I have--my email is

      Take Care,

      Jen :-)

    • livingnowsc profile image


      5 years ago from Anywhere!

      I went through the whole opiate addiction and I will be a opiate addict for the rest of my life. I know exactly what it is like to be there. I am currently on Suboxone to manage my opiate addiction, and it works great for me. There is a difference between Suboxone and Subutex, not much, the difference is the Suboxone contains a opiate blocker, the Subutex does not. The suboxone is made up of two ingredients which are: buprenorphine and naloxone. Buprenorphine is Subutex. The Naloxone is the blocker, it is actually the same thing that they give someone in a OD situation. I did try taking Subutex for a while, when I first found out that I was pregnant, and it made me sick. I felt like I was ODing everyday. They thought it was just the pregnancy at first, but come to find out 4 months later it was the Subutex. As soon as I switched back I was better. They also have the Vivitrol Shot out, which is a monthly shot and it contains the Naloxone. The Naloxone was first put on the market to help alcoholism, and in 2005 it was discovered to help opiate addiction. I have been taking Suboxone for over a year now, and it works great for me. I was the type of person that could go several months without taking a pain pill, but a thought or seeing one and my body would go through withdrawal almost instantly. Within a month of taking Suboxone I was able to get my a pain pill for my mother and not have any thought of taking it whatsoever $6. With Suboxone I have been able to get my life together. I don't ever think about taking a pain pill. I feel normal. Yes it does give me a little kick in the morning when I first take it, but I don't have the urge to overtake it like you do when you take pain pills. It doesn't do any good to over take it. I don't know how long I will be on it, I am already on a low dose of it now, the doctor has talked about lowering me to 2mg/.5mg of it and I will take that for the rest of my life, considering I am high risk for relapse. Taking Suboxone is compared to someone taking insulin because they are a diabetic. A diabetic isn't considered addicted to insulin, because the have to take it everyday to manage their diabetes. Suboxone works that way for me, I have an illness of opiate addiction, and Suboxone manages it for me. In active addiction with a substance there are negative behaviors with negative consequences. Being medically dependent on a substance, means you have to take something to help you be a productive member of society. Suboxone is considered to be on the list of Medically Assisted Treatment (MAT). It is well worth it to me, and there aren't enough people who realize the benefits a MAT drug has.


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